Over the next two weeks, I will be offering a daily tip for businesses struggling through the recession. Today, I’m going to look at how YOU are responding to this economic change.
How have you changed your business processes or focus to accommodate the new climate? Rest assured that once we are out of the stormier waters, we will not just return to normal. The business arena has changed irretrievably and so has your customers’ buying behaviour. How have you adapted? Retail fashion outlets may find that more expensive pieces are moving slower than mid-market items, or perhaps consumers will only purchase once every couple of months, rather than every week. Grocery stores may find that they are selling many more own brand label products than previously, so need to increase levels of stock and perhaps introduce more products into that line.
It is essential that you analyse if and how your customer buying behaviour has changed and amend your strategy accordingly. B2B organisations should by now be requesting payments by installment, rather than at the end of projects, to maintain a healthy cash flow.
Do not be tempted to enter into a competitive price war simply to encourage more business. Customers are not merely looking for low prices (which may well impact negatively on your brand image). They are looking for added value, searching for the organisation who will do an excellent job, provide excellent service and develop a relationship with them, at a cost that won’t break the bank. Concentrate your efforts on providing them with a great buying experience – engender trust, respect and develop that relationship with them.